IT Pro is supported by its audience. When you purchase through links on our site, we may earn an affiliate commission. Learn more

Head to Head: Windows 7 vs Ubuntu 9.10

Windows 7 turns to face its latest challenger in the form of Ubuntu 9.10, the latest and greatest flavour of Linux to be released.

Our test system was a Lenovo ThinkPad X300 laptop, with a 1.2GHz Intel Core 2 Duo processor and a 64GB SSD hard disk, so while not bleeding edge it's still a relatively speedy piece of hardware. Windows 7 has a very straightforward installation process that won't trouble users there almost no user interaction. On our test system it took no more than 25 minutes to go from installing the disk to having a working system. However, upgrading from Windows XP or Vista can take a very long time, depending on the speed of your system and the number of applications you have installed. The bottom line is, if it's not a clean install, set aside a serious amount of time for your upgrade.

Ubuntu is a free system, and the ISO or disc image - can be downloaded from here. Once done the 750MB image needs to be burnt to a CD via a burning program such as Nero Burning ROM.

Windows 7 now has a very handy ISO burning utility built-in. Just insert an empty disc right click to burn and that's what we used to create our CD.

Once you pop it into your system, the Wubi (Windows Ubuntu Installer) comes up. This has a very clever system that enables you to install Ubuntu from inside Windows, without having to create a partition first. This is fantastic for first time users whatever their technical level, as it enables them to try Ubuntu with little effort or risk.

The WUBI effectively creates a virtual hard disk so that once you reboot you've a boot option to choose between Windows and Linux selectable via the arrow keys. There is a performance hit with this approach, but it's not significant.

If you're really in trepidation though you can try Ubuntu without having to install it at all and run it from the CD. A note has to be made of Ubuntu Netbook Remix, a version optimised for netbooks that can be installed directly from an appropriately formatted 1GB USB key.

So while the Windows 7 installation is simplicity itself, we were won over by the flexibility and ease of use of the Ubuntu Wubi tool.

Winner: Ubuntu 9.10

Featured Resources

Big data for finance

How to leverage big data analytics and AI in the finance sector

Free Download

Ten critical factors for cloud analytics success

Cloud-native, intelligent, and automated data management strategies to accelerate time to value and ROI

Free Download

Remove barriers and reconnect with your customers

The $260 billion dollar friction problem businesses don't know they have

Free Download

The future of work is already here. Now’s the time to secure it.

Robust security to protect and enable your business

Free Download

Recommended

How to reinstall Windows 10 without losing data
Microsoft Windows

How to reinstall Windows 10 without losing data

18 Jul 2022
How to choose APM software for your business
Whitepaper

How to choose APM software for your business

4 Jul 2022
16 ways to speed up your laptop
Laptops

16 ways to speed up your laptop

13 May 2022
EMA: The state of AIOps
Whitepaper

EMA: The state of AIOps

1 Apr 2022

Most Popular

How to secure your hybrid workforce
Advertisement Feature

How to secure your hybrid workforce

23 Sep 2022
What your hybrid workforce needs from their laptops
Advertisement Feature

What your hybrid workforce needs from their laptops

21 Sep 2022
Cloud and cyber security certifications remain highest paying for IT professionals
Careers & training

Cloud and cyber security certifications remain highest paying for IT professionals

29 Sep 2022